He will always cherish the memory of the smile.

Jayalalithaas only Malayalam film Actor Innocent recalls the smile she bestowed on him
news Cinema Tuesday, December 06, 2016 - 14:09

It was in 1973, when no one really knew him, that Malayalam actor Innocent first met J Jayalalithaa, who was then a budding star.

Then, Innocent recalls, Jayalalithaa was an amiable co-actor, a versatile actor who created ripples in the film industry with her talent. 

Having acted in a number of Tamil, Telugu, Hindi and Kannada films in a career that spanned over 140 films, the 1973 film “Jesus” was her only Malayalam film.

At the time, Innocent was still a newbie in the industry, hoping to make his big break in cinema. 

“This was around 40 years ago, when I had travelled to Madras from Kerala, with dreams of acting in films. After struggling for nearly three years, I landed a small role in PA Thomas' film Jesus. I was to play the character of a prominent person in King Herod’s cabinet, and the character required me to wear a beard-wig for it,” Innocent said. 

However, this had deeply upset him. After all, he had gone to Madras hoping to get his big break in films. 

“If I wore a beard-wig, nobody back home in Kerala would recognize me. So, I shared my concerns with the make-up artist, who in turn told the director. Annoyed by my demands, I was even asked to leave the set if I did not act according to what I was told,” Innocent said. 

Courtesy: Youtube

Innocent delivered his lines perfectly, after Salomi, the daughter of the King – played by Jayalalithaa – mesmerized the cabinet with her graceful dance. 

With this being Innocent's only scene in the two-hour film, he admits that he did not get a chance to interact with Jayalalithaa then. But he fondly remembers the all-knowing smile Jayalalithaa granted him. 

“I believe she was aware that I raised objection to wearing a beard-wig, through her make-up artist who was present there at the time. While she was passing by me after the shot, she looked at me and smiled before walking away,” Innocent recalls fondly. 

He will always cherish the memory of the smile.